Mark Mulder, LHP
15-6, 3.62 ERA
96/59 K/BB, 16 HR in 176.1IP
Greg Maddux, RHP
11-11, 4.41 ERA
112/30 K/BB, 24 HR in 183.2 IP
CF Jerry Hairston Jr SS David Eckstein
SS Ronny Cedeno 3B *Abraham Nunez
1B Derrek Lee 1B Albert Pujols
3B Nomar Garciaparra CF *Jim Edmonds
C Michael Barrett RF *John Mabry
RF *Jeromy Burnitz LF So Taguchi
2B #Neifi Perez C Yadier Molina
LF Matt Murton 2B Hector Luna
P Greg Maddux P Mark Mulder
Maddux should have 5 more chances to win 4 more games to keep his 15 wins a season streak alive. Assuming the Cubs keep a 5 man rotation and don't skip any starts, here's Maddux's slate for the rest of the year. Tonight 09/07 @STLC 9/12 vs. Cincy 9/17 vs. STLC 9/23 vs Houston 9/29 @ Houston Pre ASB #'s: 2004: 7-7 4.51 ERA/18 BB/77 K/20 HR/112.2 IP 2005: 8-6 4.67 ERA/20 BB/72 K/16 HR/115.2 IP Post ASB #'s: 2004: 9-4 3.48 ERA/15 BB/74 K/15 HR/101.0 IP 2005: 3-5 3.97 ERA/10 BB/40 K/8 HR/68.0 IP He should surpass his innings mark tonight to get his contract to vest for next season as well. It would be real nice if he helped knock the Astros out of the playoffs to keep the streak alive. The Cubs trounced Mulder the only time we faced him this year in Chicago, to the tune of 7 runs in 4 innings. Murton was actually the only hitter to not get a hit that day among the starters. Maddux happened to start that game for the Cubbies as well, throwing a 101 pitch, complete game for his 9th victory of the season. This is the last game we'll all see the Cubs play at Busch Stadium and I can't say I'm the least bit sad. It's been the house of horrors for us throughout the years and there is something communistic about artificial turf (yeah I know they went to grass, but the glory days were 115 degree days in the middle of August watching Willie McGee, Vince Coleman and Ozzie Smith run all over us). A win today and the Cubs take the season series at Busch Stadium, I believe that hasn't happened since 1995(we really need a fact-checker here at TCR). It would also give them no worse than a tie for the overall season series, even with 4 games left at Wrigley before the season ends. Go Cubs, but more importantly GO JAXX!!!


amen about being glad to see the last of busch...and props to justin for that nice writeup in the previous post. even though the fans in stl are mostly classy, that stadium is hell to visiting teams.

wow...Baker really hates sitting Neifi on the bench, doesn't he. He will find any reason possible.

This is pretty mind blowing, but over the past 10 games, NE!F! has had 4, count em, 4(!) 3 hit games and one 2 hit game. Over his past six games he's had 3 hits, 0 hits, 3 hits, 0 hits, 3 hits, 0 hits. Be on watch for a NE!F! trifecta tonight!

#2 It seems really sad that I don't want him to be a Cub next year because he is a great backup. Alas, with him starting over Walker I can't appreciate him. I really hope he goes elsewhere next season. C'mon Hendry, don't resign him.

I'm not a Neifi hater or a Dusty hater, but this is getting silly. We'd have to shut that guy in a meat locker to keep Dusty from starting him.

Something communistic about artificial turf? If anything, the Communist would prefer natural grass. Harder to care for means a larger grounds crew bringing us closer to universal employment.

I just can't be happy for the cubs bc it was neifi who drove in the run. It's like he's signing his name on the line to be our starter one hit at a time.

Still in the playoff hunt with a win tonight............

Can someone explain to me why you wouldn't just start Maddux on 4 days rest for the rest of the year, skipping guys if necessary? He'd get an extra start that way.

"Still in the playoff hunt with a win tonight............" Who, Minnesota?

With tonight's outing, Greg Maddux has officially reached the number of innings required (400 IP over 2004-05) for his 2006 contract option (and $9 mil salary) to vest. So unless he retires or agrees to a trade, Mad Dog WILL be a member of the Cubs starting rotation in 2006.

I hate Neifi...he teases us with a bunch of meaningless singles and then, with a chance to put the game away and assure the cubs a winning record at Busch, he GIDP (second time tonight) with the bases loaded. WORST PLAYER EVER

wow...the Cards are gonna get a 5 out ninth (and probably win or tie it too) dang umpires

Cubs win 2-1, despite the best efforts of the umpires. Now they can blow up Busch.

Looks like I missed out on drama tonight, I was watching the Astros and Braves. Great result though. Can anybody with time summarize the umping goofs?

A short list of ones that I saw: Mulder getting a larger strike zone than Maddux. A play at first where the umpire said that Lee was pulled off the bag, and I'm pretty sure he had the ball before he lost the bag. A steal at second where the umpire called the baserunner safe, even though the Cardinals broadcast team said that it looked like he was out... which is the closest Hrabowsky and Buck will come to admitting they got a lucky call. The last two occurred in the ninth inning and almost had an impact on the result of the game... Maddux was able to work well with the strike zone he was given.

Nice hit by Murton. The guy is batting .333 and can't crack the line-up. I wonder who had to spray the WD-40 on him prior to the game with how long he has been on the bench.

it was very suprising maddux didnt flip...he was LIVID in the dugout about not getting the same calls mulder was.

Hey, where are all the guys who "knew" that Dontrelle Willis wouldn't win 20 games? But then these are the same people who didn't know he was worth keeping in the first place.

im not one of the ones who thought he wasnt worth keeping, nor did i think he wasnt capable of winning... but seriously, dontrelle wasnt on anyone's radar (just like clement wasnt) when that trade went down. one of the reasons willis was expendable was his inability to change his windup and delivery. he was expected to be an injury risk of the highest order. he's got an extremely violent and top-heavy delivery AND throws across his body...the fact his arm is still in one piece is a testament to genetics...i guess that's same toughness is what makes his mom a steel welder for a living. if you take your way-back-machine 3-4 years ago there probally wouldnt be one person who wouldnt predict a major shoulder/elbow injury for willis by now...go figure...go baseball...

btw..yes, his AA numbers were there on willis, but his mechanics scared people to death.

And Bluewater Pennant, where were your complaints about trading Willis when the deal happend 4 years ago? Oh yeah, you weren't even following the Cubs then.

Has anyone actually read somewhere that the Cubs thought Willis' delivery was an injury waiting to happen? Someone in the Cub organization actually broke down a pitcher's delivery and deemed it dangerous? Who is this genius? Can we introduce him to Kerry Wood? Angel Guzman? Mark "Aches and Pains" Prior? The only thing that would amaze me more is if I heard they had a high-level discussion concerning the benefits of having a leadoff man with a high on base percentage.

I haven't been around much..but I see Cubswinthepennant is still obsessed with former Cubs players to the point of sickness. For the 3 people in the City of Chicago who thought at the time that getting Alf and Clement for Willis was a bad trade...congrats to you on Willis' 20 win season. Shit happens.

they actually tried to get willis to smooth out his delivery, but it didnt take and his comfort allowed him to go back to his self-learned vida-blue-on-crack delivery. there is nothing about willis's mechanics that equal health. he's holding together, though...good for him. its a nice arguement for how not all pitchers are made equally and cant be judged solely on perceptions. just like perfect mechanics dont mean you got a 100% chance of health, imperfect mechanics dont mean you got a 100% chance of injury. the cubs didnt get rid of him because of it...they devalued his worth because of it and he became a piece of a trade. supposedly willis wasnt even the 1st guy florida even wanted as a toss-in.

Ignoring the bizarre and unnecessary comments by a bleeding bore and a dumbass troll, Dontrelle Willis' accomplishment is simply amazing. He's only the thirteenth black pitcher to win 20 games in the major leagues. And to do it in the age of five-man rotations and in only his third year is even more incredible. Not to mention the fact that he's the first 20 game winner in Marlins history. But Willis is not only a great pitcher, he's a good hitter, an accomplished baserunner and fine fielder of his position as well. And contrary to what some of the gasbags who occasionally stalk these hallowed halls may say, his ability was obvious to anyone who really took a look at him. Like Pudge Rodriguez who caught Willis' first major league game said, "I knew since the first start that he was going to be a great pitcher." And of course it's completely relevant to mention Willis' 20th win on the night he did it when we have no less than Andy McFail claiming that Willis is an example of how well the Cubs minor league system is doing since he took over and reshaped it.

who exactly said willis sucked? his only big concern was how long he could hold out without getting injured as far as what ive heard.

And I was a bit surprised that he's maintained his velocity. It's up a few MPH from last season, from the limited stuff I have seen on him.

Dontrelle Willis hadn't pitched an inning above Low-A ball at the time of the trade, incidentally. And not even the Marlins are pretending that they ever thought that Willis would be anywhere near this good. Hindsight is 20/20. Furthermore, the Cubs received Matt Clement as a throw-in in that deal too, and he also turned out better than expected. Remember that the main target in that trade was Antonio Alfonseca, and that's the real reason why that was a misguided trade. Just be grateful the Cubs didn't trade Carlos Zambrano, because him turning into one of the best starting pitchers in baseball came as a bit of a surprise to everyone too. The Cubs flirted with trading him, converting him to a long reliever and making him a closer, he was basically a huge question mark, before they just settled for putting him at the back of the rotation, expecting an ERA nearer 4.11 than the 3.11 that they actually got in 2003. Again, hindsight is 20/20.

1. John Hill makes an excellent point that unless someone had the gift of prophecy, no one could tell in March 2002 that Dontrelle would turn out this good. The trade was Taveras for Alfonseca with Clement and Willis as throw-ins. the trade still would not have worked out to bad for the Cubs if they had resigned Clement. 2. Howeer, Crunch, you can't buy the organization's Bush like after the fact rationalizations for the trade, that "they were worried about his delivery." This organization from the majors (Wood and Prior) to the minors, has been one pitching injury after another from 2003-2005. Tbone's comments are right on. The Cubs don't have a clue about keeping pitchers healthy (to the extent that is within any team's power - basically you can do things to mitigate and try to select pitchers who show their arms and bodies can stand up to the stress of what is, under any circumstances, a pretty stress act of throwing a ball 90 mph off of a small hill). 3. Congrats to Greg Maddux for pitching another gem tonight. When you get old like me, you have a real fondness for the old stars when they shine. 4. "Wait till Next Year," Neifi's whole value offensively is his batting average, and for all players BA is quite a bit of luck (hard shots that go right at someone and little dribblers and dinks that fall just out reach). Neifi is a natural to GIDP because he will hit a ground ball to an infielder at least six out every 10 plate appearances. He does not walk, he does not usually drive the ball deep, so when there is a runner on first, expect to see a GIDP at least half the time. You can't get mad at Neifi when he does what the odds say he is likely to do. You may want be a little unhappy with the manager who keeps drawing to this particular inside straight all the time. How come I have this sinking feeling that Neif will be our starting SS next season?

"Crunch, you can't buy the organization's Bush like after the fact rationalizations for the trade, that "they were worried about his delivery."" that goes beyond the orgainzation...the guy throws very violently and across his body...all-in-all its a recipie for disaster. hasnt happened and he's still going strong, so chalk one up for genetics. there's a lotta people suprised he's still in one piece more than he's successful. batters cant read him well and his control has always been good. even though im a notorious lefty-starter hater i wish he was still a cub.

Cubfaningermany - you are absolutely right about Neifi and the dreaded GIDP. He now has 20, and is fifth in baseball in that category. In addition, three of the four guys with more GIDPs have OPS's above .800; only the atrocious David Bell is worse than Neifi. Now, I might be OK with Neifi as the starting SS if the Cubs go out and pick up two big outfield bats, either via trade or through the slender free agent pickings. Neifi's defense has been excellent (well above average according to most defensive metrics) and the money saved by not signing Nomar or Furcal could be used towards getting those outfield bats and improving the bench. Plus, the caveat here is that Neifi hits eighth. However, back to the original point, Neifi is a DP machine and it is a truly deadly trait. Every time I start to get comfortable with him playing a large role next year, facts like this make me very uncomfortable.

Can someone please explain to me why Murton was replaced with Patterson in the bottom of the ninth? In a close game, I can understand bringing in Patterson for defense, but why move Hairston over to left? Can he possibly be a better defender in left than Murton? Does Murton have an injury or something? Does Dusty know that Murton isn't Dubois?

the willis trade was a good one at the time. in fact, the cubs did a good job of "positioning" by stating that julian tavarez was an important part of their rotation. tavarez was the primary component of the deal if you remember...the real issue is how cabrerra and willis were able to contribute so much to the marlins 03 team. that stuff never happens to the cubs because we never develop talent at the major league level.

the cubs won two games this week with murton and cedeno in the lineup. too bad cedeno didn't get any hits-that means he'll be sitting tonight.

Can someone explain to me why you wouldn't just start Maddux on 4 days rest for the rest of the year, skipping guys if necessary? He'd get an extra start that way. There's only one "reason," Baby Maddux, and that's because Baker's an idiot. I've been hoping and praying they'll do right by Maddux in this respect; by skipping Williams on the 20th and Rusch on the 26th, Maddux would be slated to pitch the last game of the year, all on regular rest. The real gaffe occurred on August 26th when, instead of pitching Maddux on regular rest, Rusch was given his turn. Not only did this mean Maddux lost two days (because of an off-day the following week), but it also meant he was forced to go against a red-hot Dontrelle Willis. There were two very obvious reasons for pitching Maddux on regular rest. 1) The seasons's over, so give the guy a shot at continuing his unbelievable, unprecedented streak. 2) Rusch had been pitching like crap. To be fair, there was one good argument for giving Doggie an extra day's rest. He was coming off a Colorado start, after which he says he often experiences a "hangover." I'll give kudos to Baker for finally saying some well-deserved nice things about Maddux, but I've never seen a manager with such a facility for doing the wrong thing. I hope to God he does one thing right (well, two things) by continuing to pitch Maddux on regular rest.

...I've never seen a manager with such a facility for doing the wrong thing.
Halle-freaking-lujah. I about crapped myself when he bunted with Barrett in the 8th (9th?). Men on first and second, nobody out, you have a guy coming up with an .831 OPS and *YOU BUNT HIM*?!?! And pretty clearly Barrett's not a good bunter, because on the radio at least it sounded like he almost popped out in foul territory twice. If the Cubs got a blowup doll in the dugout who just let the players hit and never gave them the bunt, steal, or hit-and-run sign, they would have won more games this year. Especially if it was a blowup doll who didn't hate kids or have an irrational attachment to Neifi! and Macias. Related: does anyone know of an Expected Run Value calculator out there? I can find charts that list ERV for different states of the game pretty easily, but these don't figure for the relative skill of the hitter and pitcher. I'd be interested to see how much more costly it is when the hitter is above-average (like, calculate ERV more accurately based on OPS and WHIP or some such).

If Baker skips Williams at all, count on at least 3-4 comments that Dusty is ruining Williams' confidence by doing so.

Intersting data about GIDP from the BP website, before yesterday's game. Perez has has 20 GIDP in 79 "oppotunities", which further cements his standing as one of the worst offenders in baseball: # NAME TEAM LG YEAR DP_OPPS DP DP% NETDP 922. Lyle Overbay MIL NL 2005 86 16 18.6% 4.68 923. Kelly Johnson ATL NL 2005 63 13 20.6% 4.71 924. Olmedo Saenz LAN NL 2005 62 13 21.0% 4.84 925. Jose Castillo PIT NL 2005 69 14 20.3% 4.92 926. Adam Laroche ATL NL 2005 91 17 18.7% 5.02 927. Vinny Castilla WAS NL 2005 91 17 18.7% 5.02 928. Ramon HernandezSDN NL 2005 68 14 20.6% 5.05 929. Jose Vidro WAS NL 2005 51 12 23.5% 5.29 930. David Eckstein SLN NL 2005 66 14 21.2% 5.31 931. Mike Young TEX AL 2005 113 20 17.7% 5.36 932. Victor Diaz NYN NL 2005 49 12 24.5% 5.55 933. Alex Gonzalez TBA AL 2005 57 13 22.8% 5.61 934. Terry Tiffee MIN AL 2005 26 9 34.6% 5.63 935. Bill Mueller BOS AL 2005 118 21 17.8% 5.71 936. Scott HattebergOAK AL 2005 99 19 19.2% 6.17 937. Chris Gomez BAL AL 2005 43 12 27.9% 6.43 938. Mike Redmond MIN AL 2005 33 11 33.3% 6.72 939. Ray Durham SFN NL 2005 93 19 20.4% 6.76 940. Tadahito IguchiCHA AL 2005 85 18 21.2% 6.99 941. Mike Cuddyer MIN AL 2005 68 16 23.5% 7.19 942. Garrett Atkins COL NL 2005 89 19 21.3% 7.28 943. Jason Kendall OAK AL 2005 112 22 19.6% 7.49 944. Daryle Ward PIT NL 2005 79 18 22.8% 7.60 945. Brady Clark MIL NL 2005 63 16 25.4% 7.71 946. Neifi Perez CHN NL 2005 77 18 23.4% 7.86 947. Jorge Cantu TBA AL 2005 116 23 19.8% 7.97 948. David Bell PHI NL 2005 119 24 20.2% 8.33 949. Miguel Tejada BAL AL 2005 112 23 20.5% 8.49 950. Brad Ausmus HOU NL 2005 69 18 26.1% 8.92 951. Sean Casey CIN NL 2005 119 27 22.7%11.33

*I hate Neifi...he teases us with a bunch of meaningless singles and then, with a chance to put the game away and assure the cubs a winning record at Busch* How soon we forget a grand-slam Neifi hit that gave the Cubs a win at Busch earlier this year.

*I hate Neifi...he teases us with a bunch of meaningless singles and then, with a chance to put the game away and assure the cubs a winning record at Busch* How soon we forget a grand-slam Neifi hit that gave the Cubs a win at Busch earlier this year.

Great J-DAMN, so one GS and he's all of sudden Albert Pujols? Should we ignore all his shortcomings, because he hit one game winning homer? Heck, even Patterson did that this year. Does that warrant an everyday starting job for either of them?

Who said anything about Neifi being Albert Pujols? I love the TCR hyperbole. No one should ignore his shortcomings...but how about *not* igorning that he's been pretty decent this year? No, we can't do that, it's TCR!

Bob - The hyperbole was because it was the other side of the spectrum from J-Damn's comment. He wants people to remember the GS and weigh it over everything else. No one is ignoring his year. Neifi had a decent one. It would have been much better if 314 of his 483 ABs (so far) hadn't been in the 1 or 2 spot in the batting order. That's not his fault, but it's a fact.

For those who care, Neifi leads NL SS in BA, is 8th in OBP and is 4th in slugging. Neifi is not the problem, how he is used is.

Neifi is part of the problem, partially because of himself, partially because of how he has been used, and partially because he can't be "hidden" on a team with so many other offensive weaknesses. FYI - The NL SS group is not very good. All the real good offensive SS are in the AL. His ML rankings in the same categories... BA - 5th OBP - 16th SLG - 10th and OPS - 13th Also he doesn't have another peripheral, like patience at the plate or speed to help balance this out. He leads the team in GIDP at 20 and only has 7 SBs. Basically, he's avg-mediocre in several statistics and below avg at others. He doesn't perform great in any one offensive stat, let alone a couple, to offset his weaknesses. That said, he's a wonderful back up IF. I'd be a big fan if used appropriately.

Also, if you look at it through fewest outs per PA among SS starters, Neifi's 20th. Keep in mind that this is a career year for Neifi. If that doesn't sum it up, I don't know what does.

"That said, he's a wonderful back up IF. I'd be a big fan if used appropriately." As I said Neifi is not the problem, it is how he has been used.

I don't think that's what J-Damn was doing, though. He was just countering that someone else said all Neifi does is hit meaningless singles and didn't come through a couple of times in last night's game, which was at Busch and which the original poster brought up, re: a winning record there. The grand slam won a game at Busch. See, that's the point, and it didn't deserve the "Pujols" backlash accompanied by more ad nauseum Neifi discussion. It was just a flip remark about one game at Busch. But I could be wrong.

And Ron hits it on the head. We would all love to celebrate the year Neifi is having (well I would), it's something special to be having a career year and still being nothing more than mediocre compared to your peers. The fear though is that it translates into more playing time (which it has this season), and potentially a starting job next season with the club. If anyone of us had faith in Dusty or Hendry that they could look beyond this year and realize what a fluke season he is having, a fluke season that still doesn't make him all that great, then we probably wouldn't be worrying about it too much. But you know after the Holly disaster, that there's a high potential of him being resigned and for us to hear those ill-fated words from Dusty next season, "Dude, I can't forget what he did for us last year". and watch Dusty pencil him in everyday at the #2 spot in the order. So, with a bit of sadness, I have to root against Neifi at this point of the season, not to prove that I was right all along, but in the hopes that he shows enough of his true nature for the Cubs to forget all about him for next season (at least as a starter).

I love post #39. If GIDP % meant anything, then I think that Miguel Tejada sucks. I have an idea for our boy Greg. It seems that he has the chance to win 15 again. But if he doesn't get it after his last scheduled start then I have a plan: In the last game (assuming that the wild card has been decided), only let our starter go 4 innings. Then put Maddux in for as long as he can go (two days rest) and hopefully he can leave the game while the Cubs are ahead and can qualify for the win. Any takers?

Maddux has integrity. That is something others on the Cubs would think up, and Maddux would decline. No way. The guy is a pro. If he gets there, he gets there. If not, he doesn't.

Chad, you miss the point completely. Sure, Tejada has hit into a bunch of double plays; however, he has been able to compensate for that flaw by putting up a .908 OPS. Neifi, even with his current hot streak, has an OPS of barely over .700. Tejada hits the ball hard a lot, thus 76 extra base hits - a repercussion is the double plays. Neifi doesn't hit the ball hard a lot, yet still hits into a ton of DPs. Let's have some perspective.

Oh, and as for your Maddux idea, I think it's ridiculous. Bending over backwards to satisfy some individual player's statistical streak is silly, and that goes double for an overrated stat like wins. I think Maddux would be the first to laugh your idea off.

I can't believe anyone needs statistics to realize that Neifi Perez should not be a Major League starting SS. There is something wrong with that.

I can't believe anyone needs statistics to realize that Neifi Perez should not be a Major League starting SS. There is something wrong with that.

Maddux wouldn't back into it. But it does remind me of the time Griffey Sr. was leading the leauge in hitting and tried sitting out the last day of the season. Bill Madlock ended up going 5-5, Griffey heard he was having a good day and put himself in to no avail. Madlock won the batting title. And that, in a nutshell, is what it's like being a Cub fan. The Cubs didn't beat the Big Red Machine but on the last day of one season one Cub did embarrass one member of the Big Red Machine. Our victories are few and small.

What, like when Don Baylor insisted on starting Fred McGriff when it was clear that the season was over (and to be fair, that year the season was over after about June) just so he could get his 30 home runs for a 5th or 6th different team?

Something tells me Maddux's record will last forever regardless of whether or not he extends it by another year.

Well, Bob. If you didn't want discussion on it then I guess you shouldn't have replied to my comment.

Chad, On Maddux he just seems too classy to do something like that. Luke, How in the hell are Wins overrated. Yes they don't indicate how good a pitcher is because it has more to with run support than anything else, but last I checked the teams that win the most games tend to make the playoffs.

How in the hell are Wins overrated. Matt Clement is a perfect example of why wins as a statistic are overrated: 2004: ERA: 3.68, Record: 9-13, WH 2005: ERA: 4.17, Record: 13-3, WH Even after adjusting for league differences, you can still see a pretty clear difference between the two years. What is the difference? Boston has a hell of an offense, and the Cubs last year did not.

Maddux has integrity. That is something others on the Cubs would think up, and Maddux would decline. No way. The guy is a pro. If he gets there, he gets there. If not, he doesn't If we were talking about what Randy Johnson did to get his first 20-win season (win #20 in relief), then I'd agree 100%. And I'm sure Maddux would, too (unless it was the 16th inning or something). But to suggest that pitching him on regular rest so that he gets an additional start would in any way cheapen the achievement makes absolutely no sense to me. For the Braves, Maddux and Glavine generally pitched every 5 days, even if that meant that the #4 or #5 starter was skipped for a turn (or delayed at least a day or two). Even if Maddux weren't close to an individual achievement, I would favor skipping Rusch and Williams whenever possible, 5-inning perfect games not withstanding. Now you are right that Maddux might decline the offer if he felt that he was being singled out for an individual achievement, and you definitely are right that Maddux has integrity (he practically defines the word), but I still completely disagree with your conclusion.

Yeah wins are overrated. Tell that to Dontrelle Willis. Wins are not overrated. They are, by them self, a bad stat to compare pitchers over one year. But in the end, winning 15 games for twenty years is very impressive. As well, a pitcher who wins 20 games once (Jose Lima) does not make him a hall of famer but if you win 300, that does.

Something tells me Maddux's record will last forever regardless of whether or not he extends it by another year. Now you've convinced me, John. Come to think of it, it was selfish of DiMaggio to continue that silly hitting streak after he hit 50 games or so. It's not like anyone's likely to break that record, after all. Why didn't he give someone else a chance? And how about that Cy Young? 511 wins -- gee, what an ego. You'd think 490, or okay, 500, would be enough. And why did Aaron keep on playing after home run 715? God knows he wasn't the ballplayer he was 10 years earlier. When someone actually explains how it would be selfish (or "backing in," as someone put it) for Maddux to start an additional game by throwing on regular rest -- not steal someone else's win by entering in the 5th inning, or pitch every fourth day but pitch no more then 5 innings if the Cubs have a lead, or leave a game after an inning if he gets shelled (and come back on two days rest to try it again) -- if someone can tell me in a rational way how that would show a lack of integrity, I'm all ears.

Well, Newman (said with disgust, a la Seinfeld), I never said not to discuss it. I questioned the way it was done. Note: questioned it, not said don't discuss it. I personally think the response to the original poster was kind of silly and pointless. But I wouldn't expect the person who made the comment to agree.

"Let's have some perspective." This should be the TCR mantra.

No one ever said that winning 15 games in 16 straight seasons was not impressive. But that does not mean that wins as a stat are notoverrated. Win in themselves are not overrated, but when used as a statistical tool to analyze players they are somewhat worthless.

I don't think that Maddux starting on his normal rest would be selfish, though it would be more so if he asked to do this in order to break the record. I do think that the idea of having Maddux come in during the 4th inning in order to pick up the win would be pretty ridiculous.

#68 Big. I certainly don't disagree. And it's 17 straight seasons (and, I hope, counting), btw. Innings Pitched is one of the most underappreciated stats in baseball. It should replace Strikeouts as a member of the Pitching Triple Crown.

I do think that the idea of having Maddux come in during the 4th inning in order to pick up the win would be pretty ridiculous. Of course it would be! I hope that was clear from the context in which I mentioned it.

Of course it would be! I hope that was clear from the context in which I mentioned it. I was referring to Chad in this - Chad proposed this idea in a way that at least appeared serious.

Yes, my proposal was serious. I see you disagree with me and that's fine. I wanted honest feedback and I got it. Re Post #68 I disagree. I would say that wins are a great tool to analyze a player. I would not look at wins over one season but over many seasons. Like I referenced before, Jose Lima. He won 20 once but over his career, he's not that good. But Matt Clement came up. And I think he is a perfect example of why wins are a great tool. No matter what, Clement will win @12 games every year.

"No matter what, Clement will win @12 games every year." Put him on KC and I highly doubt that.

I was referring to Chad in this - Chad proposed this idea in a way that at least appeared serious. Sorry, Big (and anyone else who I didn't realize was responding to Chad)! Vulturing wins in the 4th or 5th innings would make the achievement meaningless, and it's not something that Maddux would ever agree to. By the way, there were a couple seasons in Atlanta in which Greg ended with 19 wins and would have had a fine chance at 20 if he had pitched 5 or more innings in his final start. Instead, he preferred to use it as a tuneup for the playoffs, leaving after an inning or two (or as long as it took him to feel like he was ready for his next start). He's always been the ultimate team player; and although I'm sure he enjoys personal achievements as much as the next guy, he's never let that get in the way of what's really important. He's also gone 20 years without ever calling out a teammate in public, even if that teammate screwed up a play that turned a win into a loss with his name next to it. And you'll notice that he could care less that his $9 million option has vested; if he doesn't feel the Cubs want him (and if he doesn't feel he belongs in the rotation) then he won't come back. Fortunately, I think the answer to those questions is "they do" and "he does." I'll be very sad when he hangs it up, but I'm sure it'll be at the right time. And as far as I'm concerned, I hope he extends the 15+ streak to 20 years -- a nice round number. I'll bet Baby Maddux concurs.

Have not posted in a long time folks but I think you know I am probably the most Maddux obsessed of all of you ( how many of you tried to watch all of his BRAVES starts) and I think skipping OTHER starters in order to give him an extra start even on 4 days rest is not the right thing. Rusch was yanked around enough this year and it nearly destroyed him, Williams deserves his starts to see if he can stay in the rotation next year. I think going out of the way to change the rotation to give him an extra start is the wrong thing and goes against the kind of traditional team first baseball he has always stood for Jessica

i will say this, Dusty should go to Greg and ask him if Greg wants to get an extra start (if even possible). If Greg asks for it, than ANY reasonable accommodation should be made to allow this. Of course, if Greg loses or get a ND in his next three starts, the point will be moot.

Have not posted in a long time folks but I think you know I am probably the most Maddux obsessed of all of you ( how many of you tried to watch all of his BRAVES starts) I think it's probably a tie, Jessica. I gave up the Cubs when Maddux left for Atlanta. I only came back to them when he came back. I've lived in New Jersey, Illinois, Wisconsin, and (now) Maryland and I've always followed whichever team he was playing for. I now have the MLB Extra Innings Package (why didn't I figure that one out YEARS ago?!), mostly to be able to see as many of his starts as I possibly can. When I can't watch one, I listen on radio or internet. When I can't do that, I watch the transcript on GameDay. I never miss a pitch, and I tape 'em all. I read practically every word written about the guy and cherish every word that comes out of his mouth. When I'm bummed after a tough loss and/or a bad outing, it's usually his calm perspective that makes me feel better. I take your point about "go[ing] against the kind of traditional team first baseball he has always stood for" -- but keep in mind (as you already know) that he had no problem when Braves' starters were skipped to keep him (and Glavine, and sometimes Smoltz) on a regular rotation for all those years. Some of those starters ended up being pretty good pitchers in their own right (e.g., Schmidt, Millwood, Neagle, Odalis Perez, Marquis, etc.). I know for sure he wouldn't go to Baker and request it, but if Dusty penciled him in on his fifth day, he'd take the ball. And he probably wouldn't even analyze the reason for it, despite being as analytical as they come. "Skip tells me it's my turn to pitch, I pitch." That kinda thing. So you and I differ in our conclusion, but I think we agree on 99% of the important stuff. I admire him greatly, as you do, as much for his approach to life as for his greatness as a pitcher. I hope the streak continues, but either way I'll live. And so will he. I think his dad might take it kinda hard, though. :) And I sure will be sad when he retires. Do you think it'll be tough on you? There'll be a void in my life. It's tough enough waiting the six months for the next season, let alone the days between starts. I'd love to see him stay in the game (or come back to it). The obvious role is as a pitching coach, but I think he'd make an outstanding bench coach. He could manage, too, but I think he's pretty shy. The behind-the-scenes role of a bench coach, advising the manager on every aspect of the game, just seems perfect.

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  • crunch 1 hour 40 min ago (view)

    he's back out in the field in the top 3rd...must be okay, but he sure doesn't look confidently healthy.  *shrug*  off-day tomorrow...


  • crunch 1 hour 50 min ago (view)

    p.wisdom seems to have injured his right leg/knee swinging a bat...


  • crunch 2 hours 12 min ago (view)

    “It did not feel good to take Javy out of the game,” Ross said. “I never feel comfortable doing that at all. That's a pit in my stomach and it was in my stomach the entire game.”


    “I blame it on myself. I lost the count of the outs,” Báez said. “We talked about it. We're on the same page. I'll be there tomorrow to help the team.”


  • First.Pitch.120 3 hours 49 min ago (view)

    The thing that gets me is that she cheated with the guy providing religous-based pre-marital counseling. Hmmm... this guy is abusing his (quasi-)professional couseling position to pursue an intimate relationship; forgot the parts of the Bible about lying, cheating, & doing dirty by the 2016 WS MVP; and clearly has very conflicted feelings on the marriage construct... yep, I'm blowing up multiple people's lives to ride-or-die with THAT guy. 


  • Hagsag 4 hours 24 min ago (view)

    I am with my hero Zo.


  • crunch 6 hours 26 min ago (view)

    whole zobrist thing got fleshed out (no pun) in public now...


  • Arizona Phil 12 hours 28 min ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed C Harrison Wenson (ex-LAA) to a minor league contract and he has been assigned to Hi-A South Bend. Wenson spent five seasons in the Angels organization, and he got an NRI to MLB Spring Training as an extra catcher with the Halos this past spring. 


  • crunch 1 day 59 min ago (view)

    69 (nice) pitches...goes 4.2ip and leaves with a man on 1st

    4.2ip 3h 1bb 5k, 3r/er (2hr)

    alzolay continues to have the HR screw him over.  12 given up in 62.1ip


  • crunch 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    d.ross pulls baez for alcantara for what was either a mental mistake forgetting the outs or totally not hustling by baez in the bottom 4th running the bases.

    cubs are down by 1.

    hell of manager power play.  hope this plays out well...expect it will.


  • crunch 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    nico expected back in early july...duffy had a "setback" and is in limbo...bote has started baseball activities, but nowhere near a return time.


  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    haha.  ump checked alzolay's hat and glove between innings and declared it all clear.

    stuff so nasty they wanna make sure you're not on that "sticky fingers" bandwagon.


  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    11 pitches, 2 Ks and a hard ground out to start things for alzolay.

    i wonder how many pitches he'll be allowed to throw if he can keep the game under control.  velocity and movement looks great.


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 3 hours ago (view)

    CRUNCH: The only way this makes sense is if the Cubs promised Ryan when they outrighted him in May that he would be added back to the MLB 40-man roster within a certain number of days or by a certain date (June 20th). Otherwise, it makes no sense.

    Ryan did have the right to elect free-agency when he was outrighted, but he accepted the assignment. 


  • crunch 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    alzolay activated, k.ryan down.  ryan was brought up less than 24 hours ago and not used yesterday.  he was already earlier optioned to AAA and the cubs DFA'd r.stock to add ryan to the 40-man yesterday.  odd use of the roster, kinda...


  • Wrigley Rat 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Exactly what I needed - thanks AZPhil!


  • Arizona Phil 2 days 15 min ago (view)

    I doubt that whatever changes are made in the new CBA regarding compensation draft picks for losing a Qualified Player will be implemented in the 2022 draft. They might, however, remove the penalty of losing a draft pick after signing a qualified player, and that could easily be implemented in the 2022 draft. That would seem to be a demand the MLBPA would make that the MLB owners could accept.